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Ignore rumours, nationwide protests will hold- NLC

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The Nigeria Labour Congress, on Tuesday night urged Nigerians to ignore news about a possible suspension of its planned nationwide strike scheduled to commence Wednesday.

The Congress in a terse statement signed by its national president, Joe Ajaero, said the protests would be held as scheduled across major cities in the country.

Earlier in a briefing with journalists at the State House, the Secretary-General of the NLC, Emmanuel Ugboaja, stated that the Congress might reconsider its stance on the proposed strike action. Ugboaja’s statement had led to a series of controversies with news about a possible suspension making waves across the country.

The terse statement which was posted on the official Twitter handle of the NLC @NLCheadquarters reads, “Ignore fake rumours, NLC is never divided. We are one united and strong labour centre. The protest rally will be held Tomorrow (Wednesday) nationwide.”

Earlier, Ajaero, in a chat with our reporter noted that the NLC had no reason to suspend its proposed strike.

“We have no reasons to call off the planned protest. If we suspend or call it off, you will know. I can tell you that the mobilisation is very high,” Ajaero said.

Similarly, a deputy vice-president of the NLC, Titus Amba, noted that there was no new development following the national broadcast made by the President, Bola Tinubu, on Monday evening.

According to the PUNCH Newspaper reports,  the government and the organised labour have been at loggerheads following the removal of subsidy by President Tinubu on May 29,2023. In an effort to foster negotiations, the government set up a committee to look into the demands of the organised labour.

Though the committee was given a total of eight weeks to come up with a suitable plan for workers and Nigerians at large, the labour leaders insisted that the committee had continued to show a lack of commitment towards their duty.

An earlier move by the labour leaders to embark on strike was resisted by the government with a court order obtained by the Federal Ministry of Justice barring the unions from embarking on strike.

The labour unions had tagged the injunction a “black market” injunction.

Presently, the NLC is demanding an immediate reversal of all “unfriendly” policies as initiated by the Tinubu government such as as the hike in the price of petrol, immediate inauguration of the presidential steering committee, an increase in public school fees, the release of the eight-month withheld salaries of university lecturers and workers and an increase in Value-Added Tax, among others as bone of contention while its TUC counterpart said it had given the government a two- week ultimatum following which it would take “solid actions.”

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